February 22, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) -- ECM columnist Cate Sacks, owner of the local shelter rescue and dog training company, Shelter Dogs to Dream Dogs, is no stranger to odd animal antics. But bad behavior hit close to home when Scooter, her seven-pound pet Maltese, was mauled by a stranger dog while out in public with the family.
The attack left a two-inch hole in Scooter's chest cavity and lungs. He also almost lost his eye and more.
February 21, 2012 (Jacumba) – Three-year-old Destiny Pierce is a survivor. Born with no trachea and with organs on the wrong side of her body, she defied doctors’ predictions that she would not live 24 hours and survived heart surgery.
"Mr. Pierce left his job and stopped his education of becoming a nurse so that he could stay at home and take care of his little angel, Destiny,"
said Lorrie Ostrander, a Jacumba resident who started a fundraiser to help the family in this small high-desert town in East County. Anthony Pierce needs a car to transport his "miracle" daughter to her medical appointments.
February 8, 2012 (San Diego)--Gabe, a San Diego military veteran, is a seemingly laid-back, young guy. He's quick to smile, easy to joke with and can often be found wearing a tee shirt that's printed to appear like a tuxedo. However, if you get to know Gabe, you quickly realize how intense he actually is. He is fearless and ambitious - an unstoppable combination.
RSVP by Feb. 21 for “lunch and learn” with prizes and more
February 10, 2012 (San Diego) – If you’re an active senior or retiree with plenty of free time and a desire to make a positive difference in people’s lives, you’re invited to a free “Lunch and Learn” at Alvarado Hospital on Saturday, February 25 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
February 9, 2012 (Santee) – The Randy Jones “5K For Independence” walk and fun run will be held on February 18 at Santee Lakes.The event benefits Home of the Guiding Hands, which assists developmentally disabled adults and which has been hard-hit by state budget cuts.
Participants are invited to stay at Santee Lakes for a day of family fun, picnic lunch, beer garden, and awards ceremony.
February 8, 2012 (Santee) -- Pathways Community Church will be offering gently-used clothing in infant through adult sizes Saturday, February 18 from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Even people who don’t have clothing to donate, can come in and stock up. Everyone welcome!
February 4, 2012 (Rancho San Diego, Jamul) -- Local Cub Scouts and their fathers volunteered on Saturday, January 28th to help maintain a nesting site for endangered California Least Terns at Mariner's Point in Mission Bay. They spent three hours clearing the nesting site of invasive plants so the terns can use the site for nesting and rearing their young during the next breeding season (from mid-April to August).
2011 Cultural Diversity Partnership Culminates with Annual Local Heroes Awards Celebration
February 8, 2012 (San Diego) -- – As part of its ongoing commitment to cultural diversity and responsible banking, Union Bank, N.A., has partnered with KPBS to honor 17 local individuals who are making a difference to enrich the lives of others. The honorees were announced as part of the 2011 Cultural Diversity Partnership, which recognizes and pays tribute to local heroes from eight diverse communities who are making a difference by improving their workplace, profession, neighborhood, community, region and the world. The year-long celebration of diversity culminates with an awards ceremony on February 8, 2012, where recipients will be formally recognized. The awards event will broadcast on KPBS-TV on April 5, 2012, at 10:30 p.m.
Bill Bodry, founder and president of the Challenge Center, was recognized at the Union Bank and KPBS 2011 Local Heroes Awards at the Balboa Theatre on February 8, 2012. Mr. Bodry poses with Tiffany Picquilloud who nominated him for the award. Mr. Bodry and 16 other honorees were nominated for making a difference in the lives of others.
Presented by Delta Kappa Gamma Societyat theThe United Church of Christ of La Mesa (UCCLM)
February 2, 2012 (La Mesa) --Are you prepared for disaster? Equipped for survival? Know what to do, what to have ready to use in the event of a flood, tornado, hurricane, earthquake or volcanic eruption? In the face of nuclear, biological and chemical hazards? An epidemic? Problems caused by our crumbling infrastructure? Terrorism?
No? Susan Conniry and Tom Beasley, authors of Ready or Not: A Disaster Survival Handbook, can help.
February 1, 2012 (El Cajon)--The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is all about being prepared for a disaster, such as an earthquake, firestorm or house fire. This FREE preparedness education program offers residents the knowledge and tools they'll need in the event of a disaster. The first academy is now full, but there are two more academies being offered for 2012. Pick the one that best fits your schedule, and call (619) 441-1737 to register. Please leave your name and best contact phone number. Hurry, classes will fill quickly.
January 31, 2012 (Alpine) -- On Saturday, March 25, 2012 the communities of Alpine and Mt. Empire will host one of their traditions, the Miss Alpine, Miss Mt. Empire, and Miss East County Scholarship Pageants.
The organizers are seeking young women ages 6-24 to participate in the pageants that have been a mentoring program for them. The pageants are produced by the Associated Pageants of Alpine/Mt. Empire and focus on community service. There is no swimsuit competition, and no entry fee to participate, only a sponsorship fee.
January 30, 2012 (El Cajon) -- The City of El Cajon Teen Coalition would like to recognize youth for making a difference in our community. If you see, hear, or know of a youth who has gone the extra mile to improve the quality of life in our community, please take this opportunity to acknowledge and reward that effort.
January 30, 2012 (El Cajon) -- The El Cajon Police Department is now accepting applications for the 2012 Citizen's Police Academy. The Citizen's Police Academy is an eight week program that allows members of the community to learn how their police department functions from the inside - out.
January 25, 2012 (San Diego) -- As part of its ongoing commitment to cultural diversity and responsible banking, Union Bank, N.A., has partnered with KPBS to honor 17 local individuals who are making a difference to enrich the lives of others. The honorees were announced as part of the 2011 Cultural Diversity Partnership, which recognizes and pays tribute to local heroes from eight diverse communities who are making a difference by improving their workplace, profession, neighborhood, community, region and the world. The year-long celebration of diversity culminates with an awards ceremony on February 8, 2012, where recipients will be formally recognized.
January 26, 2011 (La Mesa)--Officials of many East County organizations recognized the contributions made by Bill and Norma Verbeck at a special luncheon eeting of the Kiwanis Club of La Mesa today at the La Mesa Community Center.
Bill Verbeck was awarded the Kiwanis International 50-Year Legion of Honor at the meeting. Tony Zambelli, president of the La Mesa Kiwanis Club, mad the presentation.
January 21, 2012 (Santee) – The 2012 holiday season may be almost a year away, but Santee Santas are getting an early holiday gift. The all-volunteer, non-profit organization that has been bringing the spirit of the holidays to the Santee community for more than fifty years was informed that they will be the recipients of a $1,000 cash donation from Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market.
January 16, 2012 (Palomar) – Friends of Palomar Mountain State Park has submitted a plan to the California Dept. of Parks and Recreation that could prevent the park from closing permanently on July 1 due to budget cuts. The group seeks pledges from inidividuals in hopes of reaching $60,000. [Editor's note: 16% of the goal was met when we posted this. Now on Jan. 17, 20% of the goal has been met. Thanks to our readers who helped! I made a pledge and hope many more of you will help save this beautiful place!)
January 17, 2012 (El Cajon)--World-renowned speaker Azim Khamisa on January 29, 2012 will kick off the 15th annual "Season for Nonviolence" at Christ Church Unity in El Cajon. Khamisa, who has been praised by dignitaries including the Dalai Llama and former President Bill Clinton, delivers his inspirational message following the senseless-gang-related death of his son, Tariq in 1995.
January 17, 2012 (San Diego) – On the Go: Transportation Solutions of Older Adults, founded in 2008, a division of Charitable Adult Rides & Services, Inc. delivered its 100,000th ride last week to Sara “Suzanne” Tell, 80 years old. She received her most recent ride from Bill Farrar, retired police officer who has been volunteering since 2010 and has provided about 100 rides.
January 14, 2012 (Julian)--Jeremy’s on the Hill Restaurant will host a fundraising dinner on Wednesday, January 25 from 4-8 p.m. for 3-year-old Brooklin Butts, who is currently at the Ronald McDonald House in Portland, Oregon undergoing treatment for cancer. She is the daughter of Rory and Meghan Butts and granddaugher of Debbie Butts, who works at the Julian Post Office.
Buy a bottle of “Sequoia” wine and help save animals at a no-kill shelter
By Millicent Arko
January10, 2012 (Warner Springs) -- During January, the owners of Hawk Watch Winery in Warner Springs will be accepting donated items for Living Free, a nonprofit no-kill animal sanctuary. Dog and cat collars, beds, food, scratching posts, treats, biscuits, and items the staff needs to maintain the animals’ living spaces and grounds are all needed. In fact, Living Free has an animal “wish list” posted on its website www.living-free.org/about/our_wishlist.html
January 6, 2012 (East County) -- Estela De Los Rios, social justice advocate from El Cajon, has been selected to receive the Ashley Walker Social Justice Award from the San Diego Human Relations Commission. She has championed battles to end human trafficking, hate crimes, and discrimination in our region.
January 6, 2012 (Alpine) -- In December, the “Alpine Squares” square dance club held their 27th annual Christmas Sock Hop for the benefit of Rady Children’s Hospital. Over $3700 was raised at this event, to be used for recreational therapy for the severely medically challenged children being treated there. The dance was co-sponsored again by Toyota of Santee, and held at their showroom.
January 5, 2012 (San Diego) – Birthright Israel, the national not-for-profit that provides free trips to Israel for young adults from around the world, has announced that thousands of San Diego area Jewish youth will have the opportunity to make a pilgrimage to the holy land in 2012 to discover their history and culture for the very first time.
January 4, 2012 (San Diego) --In the beginning of its second year, the San Diego Veterans For Peace (SDVP) group’s Compassion Campaign has coordinated the efforts of a few dedicated veterans in an effort to help some of the most needy veterans. The Compassion Campaign established in December 2010, is the nonprofit group’s crusade to provide sleeping bag sets and waterproof gear to San Diego’s homeless population.
A former mortgage industry insider from La Mesa shares why he joined the Occupy movement
Story and photos by Ron Logan
"When you get presidential candidates saying that the first thing we should do is take a bath, and then go get a job, they really don't understand the movement." – Mike Garcia
January 2, 2012 (San Diego) – Even though the Occupy Movement has lasted for more than three months now, most people do not comprehend the importance of the movement or understand what the protests are even about.
On December 19, I sat down with Mike Garcia at Downtown Johnny Brown's at the Civic Center Plaza. Garcia is a La Mesa resident and Committee Member of Occupy San Diego (OSD). I asked him some straight-forward questions. His answers were eye-opening and offered insight into what OSD is all about, its struggles and its evolutions-- and how he first became involved in early October.
January 1, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – Rose Hooper and her two teenage children lost their Jamul home in a fire December 29, two years after Rose’s husband died of cancer. Now Nick Baldwin, an El Cajon business owner, has started a drive to collect donated items to help this family in need.
A memorial service is set for December 31 in Alpine
December 30, 2011 (Alpine) --A trust fund has been set up at Chase Bank for the two young sons of Debbie Meltzer, who was killed December 23 by her husband, Justin Meltzer. (story: http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/node/8213)
You can donate at any Chase bank to the Jacob and Lucas Meltzer fund. The account number is 3010155215.